My Big Lesson From 9/11

Filed under Estate Planning, Estate Planning Blog, Family, Marc's Personal Blog | By

911Like many of you, I watched the remembrances and commemorations covered on television Monday, September 11, this past week.  I thought a lot about that fateful day 16 years ago, my memories of watching the towers come down still vivid in my mind.  The horror, the sadness, still heavy on my heart.  The heroic actions of so many brave men and women still giving hope to my soul.

And then on Tuesday, the very next day, I was listening to motivational speaker Winn Claybaugh, as he addressed the Sierra Madre Rotary Club about experiencing the very same feelings I myself had just the day before.  We shared the knowledge that those thousands of people, trapped in airplanes or buildings, suddenly realized they were in the very last moments of their lives.  And we both thought about how that must have felt – but of course, we can’t really know.  The one thing we do know, however, beyond a shadow of a doubt, is that many of those people, comprehending they only had moments left to live, chose to use those precious last few seconds to make phone calls.

We’ve all heard the stories.  And we know they didn’t call their bosses, or their employees, to complain about stress in the workplace.  We know they didn’t call a neighbor or relative they were having a dispute with to take one final parting shot.  We know those that could, made phone calls to the people they loved most in the world.  And we know the simple message they conveyed was a message of love.  “I love you,” they said.  “No matter what happens, know that I love you.”

Because in the end – the literal end – nothing else mattered.  At all.  To a person, they just wanted to hear their loved one’s voice one last time.  They wanted to send one final message: “I love you.”  That was their priority; the most important thing in the world.  Nothing else mattered.  Can there be any doubt love is stronger than hate?  Can there be any mistake that what’s most important, when everything is all said and done, is the love we have for our families?

How amazing is that?! What a tribute to us as human beings. And yes, pure evil does reside in some human beings. That’s always been the case.  But there is also such pure goodness and love in so many of us.  And ultimately, this all speaks to why I love doing what I do.  Because at the very end, nothing matters but the love we have for our families.  Estate planning is the way – the only way, in fact – to guarantee that last message of love, security, and hope comes through to our loved ones loud and clear.

And when it comes right down to it, that’s the only thing that matters.  So, my question is this: have you taken the necessary steps to ensure your final message will be clearly heard and unequivocally understood by the people you love most in the world?  Estate planning can – and should be – about so much more than just legal documents.  It is – and must be – about successfully finishing the most important message of your life to the most important people in your life.

If you haven’t gotten it done yet, stop procrastinating.  Get your estate plan in place.  Don’t let the most important opportunity of your life pass you by.

Dedicated to empowering your family, building your wealth and securing your legacy,

Marc Garlett 91024